Edited letter as it appeared in the Croydon Guardian
The Conservative council’s decision to invest in tobacco companies to maximise returns for its pension funds is, I am afraid, par for the course for a Tory administration. The pensions sub-committee apparently acted on recommendations from advisers. If the remit of a financial adviser is to ensure a secure return on ones investment, then of course tobacco companies will be suggested. The thinking process is similar to those idiots who justify the purchase of 4X4 vehicles for urban use, because they are supposedly safer. The fact that you are greatly increasing the levels of harmful greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, than if you were driving a saloon car, literally flows out the electric window. Both are examples of the ‘I am alright Jack’ mentality.
However, the council should take into account three considerations when reaching its decision. Firstly, the performance of ethical funds show respectable growth in comparison – indeed the future top performers are likely to be renewable energy providers. Secondly, a series of further compensation claims may well effect the share price of tobacco companies. Finally, it is socially irresponsible for a council to invest in an industry that is associated with the deaths of 100,000 people in the UK every year?
If anyone was unsure what the morals and ethics were of this Conservative council, then this example should confirm all our apprehensions.
Croydon Green Party
Tags croydon, greenparty